Here it is December again —Tom and I are still healthy and mobile. Life is good as we continue to maintain our dream home and keep the spackle wet and pliable as we sculpt our aging bodies into rock hard shape.
(I'm doing the face exercises and lifting and stretching my neck part--A,E,I,O,U.)
We have two new additions to the family Rocky and Apollo—that today become one year old. We are having a party later, inviting all of their cat, and dog friends. This week Apollo chewed up my brand new business cards, which the FEDEX driver so graciously let him bring back to the house—ALONE! Imagine, the driver thought Apollo was so well trained he didn’t even bother to honk his horn! Apollo eagerly ripped open the box and drooled and chewed on each and every card inspecting them for quality and leaving his stamp of approval. I am so proud doesn’t quite describe it. Zeus, our most royal Great Dane spends most days sequestered in the garage. He is eight years old now and can only take so much excitement. He prefers to stretch out on a premium carpet next to the Bentley until two in the afternoon, or until nature calls.
Tom and I are still working out in the gym, only not at the same time. I prefer to walk or jog on the treadmill, alternating on the recumbent bike with a dash of weight lifting and crunches thrown in for good measure, whereas Tom does about one thousand crunches a day, and will grunt and groan through a grueling workout, his sweat glistening from every pore and then want to blend up a fruit tree mixed with protein powder for breakfast. I am still counting calories and limiting my excitement to writing and I’ve just taken up bowling again. Golf is too hard on my lower back and pinched sciatic nerve. The doctor approves so long as I continue to lift weights. (Doc-what about the bowling ball?) I know you are wondering at this point (I wrote pint first, so what the hell, I’ve quit but do go ahead) how much longer will she go on? My eye lids are drooping and I think I have a crick in my shoulder. Seriously, whose idea was it anyway to send Christmas letters?
At harump-donk-humpf my memory is starting to fade. It is a good thing that I keep an appointment book throughout the year to record all my activities or I would have to make this shit up.
Tom’s daughter Natalie came for the summer with three of her children, Ashley, Andrew and Kaitlyn. We were thrilled –and the time passed quicker than originally expected. Thank GOD for diazepam.
I am working on a novel. Goodreads.com is sponsoring my two book giveaways, click on my blog links. My book, Letters to a Prisoner by Connie D. received an Honorable Mention in Poetry at the New York Book Festival, not bad for a self-published book on a small budget. And I just released Meadow Pause Revisited by Cornelia Connie D. DeDona, another poetry and photography book that is available on Amazon and my blog. On Saturday April 16, 2011, I lead a panel on Alternative Publishing at the Kapolei Public Library. In September I was accepted as a member into the NLAPW (National League of American Pen Women). I had three poems and two photographs published in the 2011 issue of Rain Bird, Windward Community College’s award winning annual journal and will be in next year’s humor issue as well, that makes five consecutive years. Also two of my short stories were published in One Forty Fiction. I appeared on Olelo from Jan. 11-14th (local Hawaiian TV channel) in January to share my story with Habilitat- the place of change; a drug rehab in Kaneohe. I also like to write and perform slam poetry. I went back to Habilitat in August and performed my slam poems and invited some of the Habilitat residents to join me, we had a blast. You can Google me; I have three Facebook pages, two domains and one ex- large weakness for dark chocolate and peanut M&M’s.
I am looking forward to foreign travel again sometime in the near future, where and when is top secret even the pentagon doesn’t know. I am sending the documents to Mission Impossible as Vantage Deluxe World Travel has been permanently crossed off my Christmas list; clearly service at Vantage is not something they do these days what with cut backs, news link and joke forwarding not to mention arranging air travel to and from Hawaii. I’m also boycotting them in support of the Amazon Rainforest, which has suffered huge blows just by Vantage Travel’s mail order business ALONE.
But I digress; I have a brand new Nikon D-5000 which I picked up in Vegas this October. Tom and I saw Elton John and the Million Dollar Piano in the Coliseum at Caesar’s Palace. Elton John named his new piano Blossom, after jazz singer Blossom Dearie. The Coliseum is so big—they have people every so many feet just to direct traffic, luckily I didn’t have to use the restroom. It was awesome and ear splitting at first—I’m not quite sure if I’m now permanently deaf or if they actually lowered the sound but I was really rocking to some old favorites by the end of the concert.
Tom regularly goes out fishing on his 26’Navy boat and has had some admirable catches to show for it. We are eating plenty of Mahi-Mahi and Ahi these days.
Tom also contributes regularly to the Hawaii Fishing News. They like him so much, they gave us a whole page with photos in the June issue, Tom and his crew David Johnson--photographer, Dr. Steven Wonderlich and Mikey Ordenstein had the unfortunate experience of having the boat’s prop get tangled up in a huge cargo net out in the middle of the pacific ocean. They had to take turns jumping into the ocean to cut the prop free, and it took hours. I had recently written a poem about the one of the garbage islands in the Pacific Ocean titled The Great Pacific Garbage Patch, which was also included. (BTW, also in my new book, Meadow Pause Revisited-- for more info: www.corneliadedona.com )
So in-between crunches, feeding/ training the bull mastiff puppies, writing fishing poems and articles, buying flashlights, recycling cans and bottles, dumpster diving for perfectly good stuff, fixing lawnmowers and maintaining our one acre estate, Tom is learning the computer and has joined Facebook. You can find him there or email him at firstname.lastname@example.org . He was accepted into The Ono Golf Club, a men’s group at Hickam’s Mamala Bay Golf Course, where he walks the course every Thursday. Who knows he may even run into the President there? Tom bought himself a 2011 Nissan Frontier truck. He also accepts donations of gently used books for the Friends of the Library where we both volunteer year-round. (Please if it has mildew, a broken binding or dead insects, put it into the trash—otherwise thank you and let us know if you need a receipt.)
Our son Jason is fit and doing well. He is still in a relationship and knows what it is like to have a teenager in the house, as his fiancé has a thirteen year old daughter. He spends Saturdays with us and occasionally comes bowling. In September he helped Tom cut, and weld a new gate next to our automatic gate in the front. Now we can walk outside without having to open the huge sliding gate or use the electric gate mechanism. He also convinced us that it was a good idea to install a photovoltaic system this year. My electric bill surpassed reasonable over two years ago. We also purchased a new energy saver refrigerator, since the old one quietly died on Thanksgiving night. It’s a good thing I have two. We are hiking up Koko head trail together next weekend, (after I pick up my real Christmas tree from Habilitat) which is a walk in the park if you are a triathlete. The last time I climbed up that hill, I sweat bullets and swore with the eloquence of a sailor. This time I’m bringing my new camera—to video our adventure, just in case my amnesia returns.
Have a Safe and Happy Holiday Season! Tommy, Connie, Zeus, Rocky and Apollo
Jason, Connie and Tommy 11-24-11 Heeia Kea Boat Harbor